how do i talk to my mom about my period and the gyno?

dear heather,

I feel very private when it comes to my period and things like that. I’ve had my period for three years now. I’m turning 15 very soon. I don’t feel comfortable talking to my pediatrician about my period. I don’t even feel comfortable to talk to my mom about it! Anytime she asks me something about it, I don’t answer or I change the subject. I feel better to talk to my friends about it and I don’t know why. I am guessing that I have to go to the gynecologist for the first time soon but I feel uncomfortable that my mom would take me or just know about me going. I would rather go by myself but I know my mom won’t let me do that. Is there any advice that you can give me to overcome this awkwardness about my period and the gynecologist to my mom? I really would like to be more open, but I don’t know how. Also, I would like to start using tampons but I don’t know how to ask my mom because I feel uncomfortable. I really don’t know what to do.

First off, it is perfectly normal to feel awkward about certain subjects around your mom. Some girls can barely even mention a boy’s name or the word "bra" around their mothers, so just the fact that you’re aware of the awkwardness and you want things to change is a big step.If you are nervous about having your mom and the gynecologist in the same room together discussing your health, you shouldn’t be because that is something that doesn’t need to happen. Your doctors are not permitted to discuss anything private with anyone other than you, so if you don’t want your doctor and your mom talking about your period together, there is no need to worry — it won’t happen. If you’re worried about your mom physically taking you to the gynecologist’s office, just know that every girl has to endure the awkwardness of her mom taking her places (school, her BF’s house, the doctor!) and it’s no big deal. It’s not like your mom is going to be in the room with you when your doctor is examining you (unless you want her to be).

If you want to be more open about your period and those topics with your mom, you should try starting small and slipping something into a conversation about your period. Maybe something like, "Ugh! I’m having such bad period cramps today," or "I’m in a bad mood — I have my period," just to see what her response is. Chances are she won’t gasp or go all crazy eyes on you just because you uttered the word "period." It’s all about starting small. I can’t say that soon you’ll be dishing about every private part of your life, but you just might be able to go to your mom with more issues than you think.

As for the tampon situation, next time you’re at the supermarket with your mom, throw a box of tampons into the cart with the other stuff and see if she notices. If she says that you’re not ready to use them, tell her you just want to try them out because you’re really uncomfortable with pads. If that doesn’t work, ask your friends for some and you’ll be old enough to buy your own in no time.

Hope that helps!

take care,

Posted in: Family, Help Me Heather
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  • Mandie

    This was actually a very useful article to read. I have had my period for almost four years now and I still have a very hard time talking to my mom about period problems… which i have alot of! So, i think i will try and use some of these tipes to talk to my mom! Thanks. Mandie.